CIT vs. Godavari Electrical Conductors (Andhra Pradesh High Court)
December, 08th 2014
Issue of notice straightaway through affixture is not proper & renders proceedings void. On the expiry of the limitation period valuable rights accrue to the assessee
(i) The Tribunal took note of the fact that (a) the issuance of a notice straight away through affixture is not proper; (b) no efforts were made to send the notices to the partners through registered post with acknowledge due; and (c) even in the matter of affixture of notices, two defects have crept in viz., (i) affixture was on a totally incorrect premises; and (ii) the procedure prescribed for affixture was i.e., taking signature of two persons living in the locality, was not followed. The appellant has no answer for all these defects pointed out by the Tribunal.
(ii) The limitation has its own important role to play in the proceedings, that are initiated under the relevant enactments. In case of limitation for institution of the original proceedings, the repercussions are serious enough and if it is about the filing of the appeals, they are relatively less serious. Either way, with the expiry of limitation, valuable rights accrue to the opposite party. For instance, if a person has lent money to another, and failed to institute any proceedings to recover the same, for a period of three years, his right to recover the amount stands taken away, not withstanding the fact that there is no denial of the fact that the amount has been lent and the other person is under obligation to repay. By the same analogy, if the Department was under obligation to initiate proceedings within a stipulated time, on expiry of the same, the assessee gets a valuable right, in this behalf. The rigour in this regard may be less, if it is a case of expiry of limitation for filing appeals, particularly where there exists a facility for condonation of delay.